The History Of Truck-Lite

We've introduced over 250 innovations to the world, but we're never done reinventing ourselves

Our Story

Truck-Lite began with an ingenious idea that sparked a revolution in truck and trailer safety lighting. Tackling the problem of the short life of trailer lights, founder George Baldwin designed the first sealed marker light, using his kitchen sink for quality control. That first light was a commercial success, and Truck-Lite released the industry’s first sealed stop/turn/tail light soon after. Since then, Truck-Lite has grown into an international company with over 1,600 employees.

Truck-Lite has a history of firsts, including the first sealed lighting products, the first LED S/T/T lamps for commercial vehicles and the first LED forward lighting for both military and commercial vehicles. All these firsts represent major industry breakthroughs, but being first isn’t enough. Our goal, from design to installation, is to deliver the best. Our products have been copied time and time again, but our superior quality has never been met by others.

First To Market, Best On The Shelves

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1955 - Truck-Lite is established by development of sealed lighting

1962 - Introduced first independent grounded wiring system

1968 - First company in the transportation industry to use polycarbonate material for light housing and lenses

1979 - Introduced the first sealed wiring harness system

1982 - Introduced the Super 40, the industry's first sealed and shock-mounted stop/turn/tail lamp

1983 - Introduced the first full-system lighting and harness written warranty

1993 - Introduced world’s first LED S/T/T lamp

1995 - Offered First Lifetime Harness Warranty

1997 - Introduced the first white LED license, dome, and back-up lights

1998 - Introduced LED lighting to military market

2007 - Introduced first LED Headlamp System

2009 - Introduced world’s first DOT-compliant 7” round LED headlight

2011 - Introduced the first LED mini marker clearance light

2012 - Introduced world’s first custom-designed LED headlight for Class 8 trucks

2017 - Introduced the ROADMAX™ custom LED headlight system for the medium-duty market

2017 - Introduced Road Ready®, the industry's first true "smart" trailer monitoring system

Making Daylight

We began the initial research into LED forward lighting for the military in 2000. After eight years of development, rigorous testing and military certification, Truck-Lite began deploying LED headlights to the Iraq and Afghanistan theaters during Operation Desert Storm.

We brought headlight technology to the civilian market in 2009, with the world’s first DOT compliant 7” round LED headlight.

In 2012, Truck-Lite commercialized its LED forward lighting product for the heavy-duty truck market, offering the industry’s first customized LED forward lighting for Class 8 trucks.

Moving Forward, Responsibly

Over sixty years of innovation has established Truck-Lite as a globally recognized brand, trusted by users from the largest fleets to smaller owner-operators. As our reputation has grown, so has our global reach.

Our Timeline

1955 - Truck-Lite is established

1981 - Acquired Do-Ray

2000 - Acquired Raydyot (Birmingham, UK), entering the mirror market

2002 - Truck-Lite acquired the assets of Signal-Stat Lighting Products, gaining manufacturing processes for sealed and bulb-replaceable lighting, turn signals, emergency lighting and vehicle accessories

2004 - Acquired FER (Eisenach, Germany), establishing European lighting manufacturing

2006 - Acquired Rubbolite (Harlow, UK), increasing European OEM and aftermarket lighting

2009 - Acquired Davco (Saline, MI), entering fuel processor business

2015 - Acquired Rigid Industries (Phoenix, AZ), expanding LED lighting presence